The Indian Broadcasting Foundation (IBF) has welcomed the order passed by the Delhi High Court on November 3, 2016, dismissing the nine petitions dealing with the time extension for implementing digital addressable system (DAS) in certain areas of Karnataka, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, and Uttar Pradesh under Phase-III, the deadline for which had expired on December 31, 2015. With the dismissal of these petitions, the stay granted by various High Courts in areas covered by the above-mentioned nine cases stands vacated and will no longer apply.
The Delhi High Court, while dismissing these nine petitions, has also directed the petitioners to switch over to digital addressable systems within three weeks and inform the subscribers by running a scroll on their networks about the digital switchover deadline. The High Courts in various parts of the country had earlier granted stay in certain matters on DAS Phase-III deadline.
The stay orders had stalled the implementation of DAS Phase-III in those areas. This prompted the MIB to move the Supreme Court to get all the cases transferred to the apex court. The SC made Delhi High court as the designated court for all cases related to DAS Phase-III.
This order of the Delhi High Court has removed the impediments in implementation of DAS in Phase-III areas. The IBF has advised all its member broadcasters to appraise all its affiliate multi-system operators and local cable operators about the deadline in Phase-III areas and make it clear that after the said date, the channels can be received only through a digital set-top box deadline.